MyKIOSK.com is the latest example of how digital tools are being harnessed to support the printed word.
A search engine for magazines, it enables internet users in Germany (and soon Austria and Switzerland) to locate the nearest stockist of their favourite newspaper or magazine, saving much frustration and legwork, especially for readers of minority interest titles.
Users simply enter their location (or allow their location to be determined) via a web broswer or smartphone app and select the magazine they want. With one click, the nearest stockists are displayed on a Google map. The database also contains information about how much the magazine costs, the current issue, the date of publication and how often it appears.
MyKIOSK.com is backed by the Federal Association of Press Wholesalers whose members provide data on orders placed by retailers every day. This ensures that the information it provides is always up-to-date. The service currently covers up to 5,000 magazines and 110,000 retailers in Germany.One interesting possibility for publishers is the option to integrate links or QR codes into their adverts. This would enable someone standing at a bus stop who sees a poster ad for a new magazine to scan the QR code to find the location of the nearest store that has the magazine in stock.